ANOTHER BUSH BLOOPER – CALLS NATGAS RENEWABLE
George Bush: Wind Advocate or Blowhard? W gives the keynote at WindPower 2010.
Herman K. Trabish, May 25, 2010 (Greentech Media)
"With former president George W. Bush giving the keynote address at WindPower 2010, the curious co-dependence and competition between the wind energy industry and oil & gas has never been more obvious.
"Today's wind industry faces many challenges, but none is more threatening than the historic low natural gas price and the new shale gas discoveries that suggest gas will continue to beat wind, its only real rival, in winning the limited financing available for new generation. Megawatt for megawatt, new natural gas plants are cheaper to build than wind projects. They can become more expensive because of the cost of fuel, which wind projects do not incur. But not when the cost of natural gas is below $6-to-$7 per MMBTU -- and right now it is hovering around $4 per MMBTU."
wind and natural gas are competitive. (click to enlarge)
"Nonetheless, wind is the biggest direct competitor with natural gas to capture the bulk of what money is now being spent to build new electricity generation….[W]hen does crossover occur? President Bush, whose governorship of Texas oversaw the policy advances that grew the Texas wind industry into the nation's foremost, has been thinking about questions like that…One of the anecdotes he will tell, he suggested, is how he saw the opportunity in wind energy in the 1990s…
"So what will grow wind for the nation? Mr. Bush did not endorse the Renewable Electricity Standard (RES) for which all previous WindPower speakers and the entire wind industry continue to push…New technology, Mr. Bush said, is the way to break the [U.S.] addiction [to oil]…Risking being "a blowhard at a wind convention," the former President listed six things he learned as Texas governor that will grow wind…(1) Good sound law…Allowing entrepreneurs to get a "reasonable return" for investment risks…(3)…[low] taxes…(4) Reasonable permitting…(5) Access to transmission…(6) Giving consumers the option to choose wind energy…"
Natural gas is a renewable, Mr. President? Really? (click to enlarge)
"…[The former President ended by envisioning] his grandchildren "…driving electric cars powered primarily by renewable sources of energy, be it natural gas…whether it be nuclear power or whether it be solar and wind energy."
"So there in Mr. Bush's inimitable words lies the answer: When natural gas becomes a renewable energy, it will certainly eliminate wind from the marketplace but, until that happens, count on wind to sooner or later regain its footing."